Page images

turned to the children.” The Rev. J. H. Graf, the missionary in Posen, relates an instance of this kind :

A bricklayer, a pious Christian, on calling last year on a Jew, a shoemaker, saw at his lodgings a Bible, containing both the Old and New Testament. He asked the Jew whether he read that book, and received this answer from him: “The Bible is my daily bread; one of my children received it several years ago, in the school of the missionaries, and ever since I have read in it as much as my business will permit.' This Christian called afterwards repeatedly on his Jewish friend, and conversed with him on religious subjects; and when he had gained his confidence, the Jew told him, that he believed in Jesus Christ, and intended to remove to Berlin, in order to be baptized, as he feared the enmity of the Jews here, and his relatives in particular.

“ Thus our school became the instrument of bringing this son of Abraham to the knowledge of Christ.”

We believe that many instances of the same kind might be adduced, if the Jews had the courage to confess the impressions made upon them in similar cases.

During the last year, 434 children attended the eight schools supported by the London Society in the Duchy of Posen. The reports received of the diligence and obedience of the children, and their progress in the knowledge of elementary subjects, is very satisfactory,

It is a remarkable fact, that teaching the children to sing, is objected to by the Jews. We are told :

“ The instruction in singing meets with much

opposition, especially in the beginning ; but when the children once have got a taste for it, they like it extremely. When they are, as for instance in the summer, exhausted and lazy, not fit to pay attention to other subjects, and the teacher says, • Now, my children, we will have singing,' they cry all at once, 'Yes, let us sing,' and they become lively and full of spirits. Still, however, our schools are not to be compared, as regards singing, to schools visited by children of Christians; but we consider it as an effective means for inclining them to receive the truth or good doctrine. The Jews fear, therefore, the singing much, and do all they can to prejudice the children against it. In Storchnest, they generally stop the teacher when he has taught them for some weeks ; and in Margonin, singing cannot be taught at all, as the children are forbidden to sing by the Rabbi.”

The children have to learn portions of Scripture and hymns by heart; and by their repeating them at home, the truth is often carried into the houses of Jewish families, into which it would, perhaps, penetrate in no other way. We have also heard of cases, where the parents had their doubts respecting passages of Scripture, to them incomprehensible, dispelled, and their fears removed, by causing their children to inquire of the teacher the true meaning of different prophecies, when they themselves had been kept from doing it for fear of their brethren, or had no convenient opportunity to come in contact with the teacher. Respecting the progress of the children in knowledge of the Holy Scriptures, during the past year, the Report before us states :

“As to their knowledge of the Bible they gave me entire satisfaction. I found the children ac.

cording to their age, and the time of attendance, well instructed. They were at home in the history of their fathers, contained in the Bible, they were well acquainted with the law, and their answers showed that they understood its meaning. I was much delighted with their ability to quote passages which treat of the sinfulness and depravity of human nature, and with their understanding this humiliating truth. Many old Jews would have been put to shame by these children on this point. They showed a great acquaintance with the promises concerning Messiah. They could quote, when asked, the passages which speak of his person, nature and work.

They were likewise no strangers to the truths of the New Testament, though some schools have not been favoured to do herein so much as others; those at Inowraclaw, Posen, Schlichtingsheim, and one at Kempen, have done more than the others. The reason why I cannot include the other school at Kempen is, that its teacher has been but a short time there, and to teach the children the New Testament, depends entirely on the degree in which the teacher possesses the confidence of the children, which it is not so easy to obtain ; and when he has the confidence of the children, he loses that of the parents. In schools, as at Margonin and Storchnest, the enmity of the Jews prevents much being done in this respect, though of the two, Storchnest has the advantage.'

Mr. Minarski, the teacher at Rogasen, has according to his reports, continued to teach the children the word of God, of the Old as well as of the New Testament, and it is only to be regretted that he is so frequently interrupted by the best children being generally taken away.

[ocr errors]

We conclude with inserting the report of an examination on the Creed, at one of the schools, communicated by Mr. Graf :

“It was highly interesting for me to hear Mr. Bartel catechising on the second article of the Apostles' Creed. His children (at the school at Inowraclaw) answered promptly the questions he put to them about the first article; they were but a few, to serve as introduction to the second; he then asked :

T. What is taught in the second article ?
Ch. Redemption, or of redemption.
“ T. Who is the Redeemer?
Ch. Messiah.
T. What is the Messiah. ?

Ch. A man.
T. Nothing more than a man?
Ch. He is also God.

T. How do we express it, when we say Messiah is God and man.

Ch. God-man.

T. Where in the Bible is it said, that Messiah shall be God and man in one person?

Ch. Isaiah ix. 6, and Micah y. 2. (they recited those passages).

“ T. Who was to be the mother of the Messiah:
Ch. A virgin.
“ T. Where is this said ?
Ch. Isaiah vii. 14.
“ T. When shall the Messiah be born ?

Ch. While Israel is still a people by himself, and the second temple is standing.

T. Prove this from Scripture. Ch. Gen. xlix. and Haggai ii.

“ T. From what tribe shall the Messiah come forth

Ch. From Judah. “ T. Where do we find this written ? Ch. Genesis xlix. “ T. From what family? “ Ch. David's. T. Who says this ? “ Ch. Nathan, the prophet. 2 Sam. vii. 12, 13. “ T. How manifold shall be his office ? “ Ch. Threefold. “ T. Name it.

Ch. Prophetic; or, he shall be a prophet : High Priest; and King.

“ T. Where is it said he shall be a prophet? Ch. Deuteronomy xviii. 15. “ T. What is he to do as prophet ? 6 Ch. To teach.

T. Can you quote a passage from the prophets, which shows that he shall teach?

Ch. Isaiah lv. and lxi. “ T. Where is Messiah said to be High Priest ? 66 Ch. Psalm cx. T. What has he to do as High Priest ? “ Ch. To offer up a sacrifice. “ T. What is the sacrifice he offers ? Ch. He offers himself. “ T. For whom? Ch. For mankind. T. Who says this? Ch. The prophet Isaiah liji. “ T. Shall Messiah remain in the sepulchre ? Ch. No, he shall arise from the tomb. “ T. Where is this said ? Ch. Psalm xvi. and Isaiah liii. T. Is he to remain on earth ?

Ch. No, he goes to heaven, as it is said, Psalm Lxviii, and cx.

« PreviousContinue »